Incredible National Parks in Florida You Won’t Believe Exist

Florida is one of the most fascinating destinations on the planet, and its national parks are living proof of…

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Florida is one of the most fascinating destinations on the planet, and its national parks are living proof of it. Inside the national parks of Florida, you’ll find deep caverns and botanical gardens, crystal-clear springs, mesmerizing flowing rivers, and untouched islands you can explore on foot.

From kayaking through mangrove mazes to spotting alligators on glass-bottom boats or going in search of the next island on a park that’s 99 percent water, here’s a look into the most unbelievably unique national parks in Florida you need to see to believe.

Incredible National Parks in Florida You Won’t Believe Exist

Biscayne National Park

Biscayne National Park

Looking for a beach and nature combo? Located in the alluring Florida Keys, Biscayne National Park is set 95% underwater, which pretty much means you need to go below the surface to truly experience it.

A day spent snorkeling or scuba diving is the best way to explore under Byscayne’s waves, but if you’d rather not get wet, you can also book a glass-bottom boat tour which will give you the chance to see below the surface.

While 95% of the park is set underwater, the remaining 5% that’s actually set on land is also worth exploring! The rest of the park is made up of small islands spread all over, where you’ll find epic hiking trails, unparalleled wildlife sightings, and sunset views so good you’ll wish you could linger a while longer!

  • Entry fee: Free
  • Best time to visit: December to February in terms of weather, but you can expect the park to get a bit busier during this time compared to spring.
  • Closest airport: Miami International Airport or Key West International Airport

Everglades National Park

Everglades National Park

Quite likely Florida’s most famous national park, there’s a whole lot more to the Everglades than most would think. Home to a whopping 15 million acres of pure wilderness, the park boasts a humongous array of subtropical ecosystems, including mangroves, marine, coastal lowlands, and so much more.

While alligators are the keystone species of Everglades, the entire park is home to an incredible variety of wildlife (here’s a fun fact for you: Everglades is the only place on the planet where alligators and crocodiles co-exist!)

While most people explore the Everglades by going on a scenic drive, the best way to go beyond the main sights and get close and personal with the nature around is by either hitting a few hiking trails (the Eco Pond Trail is great for flamingo sightings and the Anhinga Trail is another incredible pick if you’re brave enough to encounter alligators up close).

Another must is to book a boat tour in the Gulf Coast area to get to know the life around Everglade’s water, including manatees and dolphins!

  • Entry fee: $30 per vehicle
  • Best time to visit: November to March for wildlife sightings and bird-watching. Moreover, water levels are low during these months, which makes hiking trails and several other activities more accessible.
  • Closest airport: Miami International Airport

Dry Tortugas National Park

Dry Tortugas National Park 1

Crystal-clear turquoise waters and palm-fringed beaches? Yes, please! You don’t need to jet set to the Maldives or Bora Bora to find paradise-like beaches, and Dry Tortugas National Park is proof of that.

If you’ve never heard of Dry Tortugas, that’s totally cool – even most local Floridians haven’t heard of it. Due to its remote location, this national park is one of the least-visited in the country, making visiting it a once-in-a-lifetime experience worth boasting about.

Dry Tortugas is only accessible via ferry or seaplane, and because most people can’t be bothered to endure the journey, your chances of getting it all to yourself are pretty high.

Dry Tortugas National Park is 99% water, with the remaining 1% constituting seven small islands spread all over. While visiting, you can snorkel in search of untouched coral reefs, find the colors of the rainbow in the sea life, or simply count how many different species of animals you can find in the depths below (sharks, sea turtles, coral, lobsters, octopus, and tropical reef fishes, to name just a few!)

  • Entry fee: $15 per person
  • Best time to visit: May through October for weather and snorkeling. Do keep in mind this is hurricane season, so make sure you check the park’s official website in case of any closures due to severe weather conditions.
  • Closest airport: Miami International Airport

Gulf Islands National Seashore

Gulf Islands National Seashore

Stretching along the Gulf Coast from western Florida and into Mississippi, this national park encompasses emerald-colored beaches with a Mediterranean-like climate paired with an array of historical forts and sites that tell stories from way back.

The beauty of the Florida side of the Gulf Islands is found in the miles of pristine shores, many of which are completely unspoiled and absolutely uncrowded. Seriously, thanks to the expansiveness of the place, finding yourself a spot to enjoy the views in complete solitude is a pretty easy feat.

Another highlight for those who enjoy exploring on foot is the mezzanine of trails leading to mountain top viewpoints, lighthouses, and forts that act as reminders of the First Nations and pioneer past.

  • Entry fee: $15 per person
  • Best time to visit: Any time of the year is great!
  • Closest airport: Pensacola International Airport

We hope this list of amazing national parks in Florida helped you craft the perfect bucket list for your trip! While some are easier to get to than others, each and every single park on this list is vastly different from the last and worth visiting even if you already think you’ve seen it all.

Have you ever been to any of these Florida national parks? Which one was your favorite and why? Let me know all about it in the comment section below!

Are You Inspired To Travel To Florida?

There really are so many wonderful places to visit in Florida. Here are 7 you’ve got to visit at least once!

And if you love to read about the place before you visit? My article about the best books set in Florida includes both fiction and non-fiction titles that I recommend reading before you go.

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